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the causes of the superiority of the long-bow over the cross-bow, the steel implement drawn up by a cranequin which the mercenaries in the service of France and Burgundy employed. He shows that the proportion in rapidity of fire was actually more than six to one in favour of the long-bow (p. 115); and explains elaborately the reason why the Southern bowman was so ineffective at Bannockburn, and so deadly in the other Scottish battlefields from Falkirk to Flodden. By the way, we may note a slight confusion between Halidon Hill and Homildon, which culminates in the index, in a single reference to "Hamilton Hill" (sic). The two battles, it is correctly stated, were fought at the interval of seventy years; but it might have been added that, while Homildon was near Wooler in Northumberland, Halidon was on the Border itself, close to Berwickon-Tweed. The remarks upon the efficiency of archers, when judiciously posted, may possibly come to be of interest in military circles once more. We thought that the officer of the 9th Lancers who fell in the campaign of Delhi, pierced through the eye by an arrow, was the last victim to the ancient weapon; but now that it appears that the hordes upon whom China is supposed to rely as reserves are for the most part no better equipped, we may hereafter have an essay dedicated to these later appearances of the bow in warfare.

While giving deserved praise to the way in which both Lord Dillon and Colonel Walrond have dealt with the history of Archery in South Britain, we must protest against the very inadequate summary of Scottish archery contained in Chapter XIII. It is self-evident that a writer as experienced and accomplished as the historian

of the Royal Company would not have come short of the expectations of Scotsmen, had sufficient scope been given him; but the "baker's dozen" of pages to which Scottish Archery is restricted must be disappointing to many who had hoped to find some notice of the doings of Highland and Border archers. No doubt-we have the authority of the author of 'Marmion' for it

"Short were the shafts, and weak the bow,

To that which England bore;'

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but the exploits of the compeers of Callum Dhu and Wat Tinlinn would have been worth a sketch, and assuredly her Majesty's Archer Guard might have claimed for themselves at least as much space as that allotted to the respectable but provincial society whose friendly contests with them are its chief title to recognition in a national sense. And where-oh where-is a facsimile of that superb figure, Raeburn's portrait of Dr Spens, the finest of all old illustrations of Archery?

It is not the fault either of Mr Bedford or of Major Fisher that their chapters can have but local and temporary interest. We turn with greater satisfaction to the practical lessons on bowmanry contained in the essays of Miss Legh and Mr Eyre Hussey. To the latter, above all, must be conceded the palm of having written tersely, elegantly, and to the purpose. His chapter will be read and quoted by archers for years to come as the ablest practical code of directions for success in their favourite exercise.

A supplementary essay by Mr Longman on the penetration of arrows is also a valuable contribution to the scientific historical study of archery. To take an

instance, his experiments help us to understand a curious story in a strange book of memoirs by Sir James Campbell (the adventurer who originally annexed the Ionian islands to the British Crown), of a demonstration of the projectile power of the bow given by a Turkish Pasha, who boasted that he could shoot an arrow through a man's body. The story is told in a vague slipshod style; but it is evident, in the light of Mr Longman's facts, that the old Turk did not boast without warrant. The representative of our brethren across the Atlantic contributes also an excellent description of the rise and progress of imported Archery in the States. It will It will thus be seen that the book addresses itself to a world-wide constituency, and we venture to predict that it will not fail to obtain their favourable suffrages.

The beautiful and touching picture of maternal affection which forms the foreground of Mrs Oliphant's latest novel1 cannot fail to sympathetically connect itself in the minds of readers with the sorrowful bereavement which overtook the gifted authoress while the story of 'Who was Lost and is Found' was passing through our pages. In the world of novelreaders, to whose interest and pleasure Mrs Oliphant has ministered incessantly for more than half-a-century, there is no one whose feelings will not have been turned towards her in this last and crowning loss. Our readers have had evidence that the late Mr Francis Oliphant was a writer finely endowed with talent and manifold accomplishments; and he wanted nothing but the bless

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ing of health to make for himself a prominent place in contemporary literature. With a bright and lively imagination, such as was seen to advantage in his playful tale of "The Grateful Ghosts," which will be still in the remembrance of Maga's' readers, he combined a penetrating and appreciative critical faculty which is well represented by studies on Henryson and and Dunbar in our own pages, and a fine touch in picturesque description which was very effectively used in his account of the Riviera, and in his little book on the 'Holy Land.' His delicate health, which but for his mother's unremitting devotion must have given way earlier, debarred him from undertaking more arduous literary pursuits, which he was well qualified to have followed up. We are sure that we only give voice to the sincere feelings of 'Maga's' readers who have been so long under Mrs Oliphant's spell, in expressing our hopes that strength may be vouchsafed her to bear up under this terrible blow. Not many women have been tried as she has been, or have come more nobly and courageously through the furnace of affliction, deprived one after another of all that were

nearest and dearest. There come to our mind recollections of the touching picture by Anthony Trollope of his mother writing bright and sparkling romances while nursing day and night her husband upon his deathbed, and of the fortitude with which other distinguished authors have clung to their pens amidst domestic sorrows and desolation; and we hope yet to have other good and powerful works from Mrs Oliphant's pen.

1 Who was Lost and is Found. A Novel. By Mrs Oliphant. Edinburgh and London: William Blackwood & Sons.


No doubt much of the depth and tenderness which Mrs Oliphant infuses into her studies of domestic life is leavened by her own lessons in the school of sorrow; and it is noteworthy, though it is probably by coincidence, that the central interest of her two most recent novels turns upon the same theme -the strong love and yearning of a mother. The figure of Mrs Ogilvy, one of the most original and striking characters in recent fiction, is too fresh in the recollection of our readers to need dwelling upon here: the lonely little woman whose strength is most manifest in her weakness; her simple, staid, narrow, God-fearing life, suddenly brought into actual contact with an atmosphere of guilt and crime; the overpowering strength of maternal love which conquers her natural loathing, and compels her to tolerate and even protect the criminal who has been the evil genius of her son; her desperate struggle to save the invertebrate Robbie from the influence of his associate, and to keep him safe in her own hands; the intense humanity which causes her to see traces of good even in her and her son's worst enemy. The appearance of a desperado like Lew in such a respectable well-ordered household as that of the Hewan is a shock to us, as to its quiet inmates; and we much prefer to encounter the type in its native atmosphere of Red Gulch or Poker Flat. But Mrs Ogilvy of herself concentrates our whole interest, which can hardly be divided with any of the other characters, - -even Robbie, round whose ultimate fate the whole action revolves, counting as little more than a pawn in the game. Mrs Ogilvy and her two old re

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tainers are natural and likeable types of Scottish character that are not unneeded as examples to contemporary fiction. The present popular conception of the Scotsman and Scotswoman as inspired idiots of dissenting proclivities may be piquant to English tastes, but cannot be particularly gratifying to their own countrymen. It is to George MacDonald, we fear, that the blame must attach of having first put forward in his earlier novels this unpatriotic presentation, and in his "Shargers" and "Soutars -we forget his particular characterisations of elevating abnormal types into general estimation. Mr Barrie's genius has not, we regret to think, prevented him from repeating the faults of his predecessor with even greater extravagance; and in the present day, "haverils," "naturals," madmen, and ministers are the essential ingredients of every reputable Scottish fiction. It is only in the pages of Mrs Oliphant and Mr Stevenson that we now meet with any serious attempt at delineating Scottish character that character which, in its many-sidedness, its strength, its sense, consistency, fidelity, obstinacy, shrewdness, manliness, even in its foibles and angularities, supplied the dominating interest in so many of Sir Walter's novels. With these two writers as current standards, the general debasement of our northern coinage scarcely admits of an



Another excellent type of Scotswoman is Miss Bethune, whom, we suppose, we may designate the heroine of 'A House in Bloomsbury,' although there are at least two other ladies who have fair

1 A House in Bloomsbury. A Novel. By Mrs Oliphant. London: Hutchinson & Co. 1894.


claims for contesting that distinction. Here again the plot is concerned with maternal love, but we have not one but two mothers, whose longing for the children they have both lost forms the groundwork of a romance which is chiefly enacted in the House in Bloomsbury,' a neighbourhood of respectable mediocrity and dull decorum, where we would not very readily seek for a sensation. From one mother, a worthless husband has carried away her infant son; the other, through an unfortunate accident, which Mrs Oliphant very ingeniously unfolds, has to go away and abandon her daughter. The lives of the two women cross each other, although there is no nection between the stories. one lady has the wish of her heart granted to her only on her deathbed, but she is able to leave a fortune to her daughter Dora, which serves to extricate her and her father from the domestic difficulties which threaten to overwhelm them. The other never recovers her child at all, but she imagines that she has done so, and is quite satisfied to hug the illusion in spite of all evidence to the contrary. Our friend Miss Bethune, for she is the lady in question who has been deserted by her husband, and has since succeeded to much wealth, encounters a youth under the charge of Dora Mannering's dying mother, whom, from his name, age, and appearance, she concludes to be her own child; and having argued herself into loving him with a mother's affection, she shuts her eyes to all facts that would deprive her of this relationship. Mrs Oliphant enlists our full sympathies on Miss Bethune's behalf somewhat at the expense of our critical judgment. Is she playing with us, and would she have us believe that love can find the same

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satisfaction in an illusive as in a real relationship? In the novel, at any rate, we have a right to expect that maternal instinct should be infallible. In real life, mistakes may be, and have been, made by poor ladies when a waif turns up that is "just like Roger," but the ideal parent is never deceived. With all our liking for Miss Bethune, she is somewhat lessened in our esteem by the rough and ready way in which she fills up the void in her heart, although Harry Gordon is in every way worthy of being adopted as a son. There is a clever little Doctor in the House in Bloomsbury,' great in psychological as in pathological diagnosis, who generally seeks to get at the root of a mental trouble or bodily ailment by a reference to the patient's grandfather. It would have been interesting to have had his frank opinion of his friend Miss Bethune's case, which he would doubtless have explained by a weakness somewhere in the Bethune ancestry. The difference between Mrs Ogilvie and Miss Bethune is the difference between fact and fiction; and the 'House in Bloomsbury' would be decidedly more full for some such absorbing presence as that of the former round which our interest could continually converge. Mr Mannering, the British Museum assistant, the quiet solitary man of research, the native proper to Bloomsbury, is the central figure round whom the other personages revolve, though he is altogether a motionless actor in the play. But when we come to know the story of this Dryasdust student, whose solitude and reserved exterior conceal a tragedy which has been brought entirely about by cruel fate and by no wrong-doing on any side, we feel much drawn towards him, and can enter into

the feelings with which, on his recovery from a critical illness, he repudiates the expensive delicacies which he cannot afford, but which are absolutely necessary to the regaining of his strength, and which come to him from a source that he little dreams of. Mr Mannering is the most natural character in the Bloomsbury House, and if he has only been sketched in outline, it is because Mrs Oliphant's ready perception shows her that detailed description is not necessary to enable the reader to realise his personality. We can all fill in for ourselves the figure of the scientific scholar who is burying a heart-sorrow behind his labours in working one of those great discoveries which would revolutionise scientific thought, if only it were ever to see the light, which we feel assured all along that it never shall. The man is a quite familiar character: simple, frugal, saving in all his worldly tastes and habits, he cannot deny his mind any luxury for which it craves. The money that should have been laid past for the rainy day, which at length pours down a deluge upon him, goes for philosophical knick-knacks, rare specimens, and early editions, all of which he has at command gratis at the scene of his daily labours in the Museum, but which he cannot deny himself the extravagance of having all for his own use. Mrs Oliphant could not have more skilfully impressed us with the earnest spirit in which Mr Mannering, on his convalescence, throws himself into the battle of life and encounters its outpost skirmishers in the form of bills and duns, than when she makes him send back that unique and costly fifteenth-century edition,

for which he has sighed so long, and which his bookseller has at last procured for him after so much inquiry and trouble. We are glad that the bibliopole has refused to take back the precious volume when the fortune of that unhappy mother, whom fell chance had separated from husband and daughter, provides Dora with ample means of gratifying her father's tastes and comfort, and of saving him from all anxious thoughts about her unprovided future.

Another recent novel1 by Mrs Oliphant, which has been for some time on our table, deserves to be noticed for the robust and vigorous personality which pervades it, and for the dramatic incidents, which Mrs Oliphant employs with more liberality than is usual in her works. Patty Hewitt is one of the most striking and original conceptions that have of late years been set before us in fiction. A selfish, ambitious, and vulgar young woman, with strong common-sense, tact, and audacity, and without an iota of principle, does not seem a likely subject to attach herself to our æsthetic sensibilities. But in spite of the unscrupulous tactics by which she foists herself into a baronial family through marriage with the "Softy," the witless only son and heir, who is almost too silly to be at large; of the splendid impudence with which she forcibly occupies her new position; and of the remorseless way in which she puts rivals and enemies to the rout, it is difficult not to feel a kindly interest in her machinations. It may be that our judgment is becoming tainted by the democratic tendencies of our day; but we take much more kindly to the

1 The Cuckoo in the Nest. A Novel. By Mrs Oliphant. London: Hutchinson & Co. 1894.

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